Hampton Boys Swimming wins WPIAL Championship for the 2nd-Straight Year


Photo via Shane Dunlap

Garrett Gess, Writer

For the second-straight year, Hampton won the WPIAL Championship. They are heading to the state finals!

The Talbots are in their second year in 2A and have outperformed the competition. After Day 1 at WPIALs, Hampton scored 158 points and was far ahead of the next closest team, North Catholic, with 100. Hampton followed up with a Day 2 performance that was very strong and scored 75 points to hold off other challengers like Riverside with 108. Similar to last season, Hampton won the WPIAL by a large margin.

2021 Results

1. Hampton: 186

2. Northgate: 167.5

3. Riverside: 144

2022 Results

1. Hampton: 233

2. Riverside: 205

3. North Catholic: 198

In 2020, Hampton competed against larger-size schools in the WPIAL in 3A. The Talbots still had one of the top swimming programs and placed 3rd at WPIALs. Last season, Hampton moved down to 2A and won the WPIAL. At states, the Talbots placed 3rd in the 200 Yard Relay. The swimmers on that crew were Ben Sheets, Ethan Apaliski, Will Retsch, and Richie Donato. Apaliski and Donato have since graduated, but the rest of the Talbot team have been able to pick up the slack.

This year in the 200 Yard Relay, Hampton’s team of Ben Sheets, Zach Sutterlin, Will Retsch, and Dan Bratu placed first with a time of 1:36.92. They also broke the WPIAL record set forth by Hampton just one year earlier.

In the 100 Yard Butterfly, Will Resch placed first with a time of 50.15. In the same event, freshman Chris Belch placed seventh with a 54.09 time. Competing for the 100 Yard Backstroke, Ben Sheets placed second with a 51.83 time. Zach Sutterlin placed fifth in the 100 Yard Breaststroke with 1:01.59.

Will Retsch broke the WPIAL record for the 200 IM with a time of 1:51.81. Ben Sheets was right behind him by placing second in the 200 IM at 1:52.55. Retsch placed 3rd in the PIAA in the 200 IM last season. His recent record-breaking time was also faster than any finish at last year’s PIAA Championships.

Now that Hampton won the WPIAL, their goal is to win the PIAA title. Towards the late 1990s, Hampton had a swimming dynasty that won the 2A PIAA Team Championship in 1996, 1997, 1998, and 1999. No school in the AA Boys division has won 4-straight swimming titles since Hampton in 1996-1999. If Hampton wins the PIAA Team Championship in 2022, it would be their 5th title and first in 23 years. It would also be the first time a WPIAL representative won the PIAA title since 2015.